This Week: Happy New Year! The 116th Congress begins and healthcare issues are part of the “buzz” of day one. Part of the government is still closed.

Government Shutdown Update: The shutdown does not impact CMS. However, the FDA is one of the agencies affected. The House of Representatives voted on Jan. 3 to fund the remaining portions of the government impacted by the shutdown, but that legislation is not expected to be considered by the Senate, despite being the same legislation the Senate passed in the waning days of the last Congress that the president rejected at the last minute. As of Jan. 7, the partial government shutdown will be at 17 days.


New Leadership

House Ways and Means Committee

  • Chairman: Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA)
  • Ranking Member: Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX)

House Energy & Commerce

  • Chairman: Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ)
  • Ranking Member: Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR)

House Budget

  • Chairman: Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY)
  • Ranking Member: Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR)

House Speaker Pelosi Supports Medicare-For-All Hearings

According to press reports, Speaker Pelosi is supportive of a hearing on Medicare-for-All proposals. The Medicare-for-All hearing is expected to be in the House Rules and Budget Committees and will be scheduled sometime in the next few weeks.

House Energy and Commerce Chair Pallone Announces Hearing to be Held on ACA and Texas Ruling

On Jan. 3, Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) of the House Energy and Commerce Committee announced a hearing examining the impacts of the U.S. district judge’s decision in Texas to strike down the Affordable Care Act. While no exact date has been set, the hearing will be held sometime later this month.


New Leadership

The Senate also returned on Jan. 3, with swearing in of new members on Jan. 4. Committee memberships will be finalized Jan. 9.

Senate Finance

  • Chairman: Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
  • Ranking Member: Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)

Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (Republican Committee Assignments)

  • Sen. Lamar Alexander (TN)
  • Sen. Mike Enzi (WY)
  • Sen. Richard Burr (NC)
  • Sen. Johnny Isakson (GA)
  • Sen. Rand Paul (KY)
  • Sen. Susan Collins (ME)
  • Sen. Bill Cassidy (LA)
  • Sen. Pat Roberts (KS)
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski (AK)
  • Sen. Tim Scott (SC)
  • Sen. Mitt Romney (UT)
  • Sen. Mike Braun (IN)

Senate Finance (Republican Committee Assignments)

  • Sen. Chuck Grassley (IA)
  • Sen. Mike Crapo (ID)
  • Sen. Pat Roberts (KS)
  • Sen. Mike Enzi (WY)
  • Sen. John Cornyn (TX)
  • Sen. John Thune (SD)
  • Sen. Richard Burr (NC)
  • Sen. Johnny Isakson (GA)
  • Sen. Rob Portman (OH)
  • Sen. Pat Toomey (PA)
  • Sen. Tim Scott (SC)
  • Sen. Bill Cassidy (LA)
  • Sen. James Lankford (OK)
  • Sen. Steve Daines (MT)
  • Sen. Todd Young (IN)

Senate Democrats Joining Health-Related Committees

  • Sen. Jacky Rosen (NV) – Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP)
  • Sen. Maggie Hassan (NH) – Senate Finance
  • Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (NV) – Senate Finance

*Note: Senate assignments are subject to ratification by the full Senate on Jan. 9.

Read more about healthcare policy on the McGuireWoods Consulting website.